Newcastle Utd Job Would Interest Rangers Boss Steven Gerrard

As soon as it was announced that the ownership of Newcastle United had changed hands (Source BBC Sport) speculation was rife regarding the club’s managerial position.

Based in Glasgow, I knew that plenty within the media would link current Rangers boss Steven Gerrard with Steve Bruce’s job. And I was’t to be disappointed as The Daily Record and Sky Sports are already reporting Gerrard as being on the new Saudi led consortium’s shortlist for new gaffers.

It’s not hard to see why the Magpies and their new owners might be interested in the former Liverpool captain.

Against all the odds, Steven guided The Gers to the Scottish Premiership title last season and ending any hopes that main rivals Celtic had of securing ten titles in a row. The Rangers boss also possesses a CV that shows he has the ability to compete well in Europe. He speaks well in front of the press and backs his players.

Importantly, Steven Gerrard the name still carries star power. It can attract players and inspire troops to get the job done. The Toon will hit global headlines if they were to appoint Stevie and that will always attract a football club.

Gerrard has been linked with a move from Ibrox before. But those offers were coming from English Championship sides and they were never that enticing.

Newcastle United would offer a different proposition.

It’s claimed that the Saudi’s are ready to plough in £200m into the club’s transfer budget. Newcastle are a sleeping giant, they have a huge and loyal fanbase and now they might just have the owners in place to take them back up the Premier League table.

The job and it’s challenge actually looks a lot like the Gers gig before Gerrard arrived in Glasgow in 2018.

The forty-one year old has always had the ambition to manage in his nation’s top flight. I’m guessing the dream job has, and always will be, heading back home to Anfield but St James’ Park could allow him to cement his CV and give him a chance to challenge with the big boys in England.

A move to Newcastle would also bring Gerrard back closer to his family.

This doesn’t mean that it is a done deal.

Steve Bruce is still in the Toon hotseat, if they were to get rid of him then other names like Antonio Conte and Frank Lampard would also interest the new custodians.

The bond that Steven Gerrard shares with Rangers is very strong. His former Reds colleague Jamie Carragher said this recently:

“He’s had it with the European nights, but Stevie has got the taste for Rangers now and Glasgow,” 

“I’m not putting words in his mouth, I’d imagine he’d be looking at maybe another two or three years where he wants to really dominate Scotland and put Rangers back up there.” 

Via BBC Sport

That timeline might match up with Jurgen Klopp’s at Liverpool. Both Steven and Jurgen signed contract extensions that run until the same date in 2024. Could that be the time Gerrard returns to Liverpool?

Or will he take on Klopp as Newcastle United’s next boss?

Only time will tell!

North London Derby Victory Shows Arsenal Potential – They Now Need To Push On

Arsenal blew North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur away in the first half at the Emirates today.

While Spurs looked pretty lethargic during much of the encounter, that shouldn’t take anything away from Mikel Arteta’s men who showed plenty of desire and skill to put their derby rivals to the sword in the Premier League fixture.

In all competitions, The Gunners have now recorded four straight wins in a row. The three league victories have sent Arsenal back into the top half of the table and just four points away from the top four positions.

Now there’s still a few things I’d be worried about if I were a Gooner.

I still think they can do better than Granit Xhaka in midfield. I’m also reserving judgment on Adam Ramsdale as their number one, although his save from Lucas Moura late on was special. The first team as a whole could do with one or two more established winners within their ranks.

But in the whole there were plenty more positives for Arsenal in their derby win.

Kieran Terney is a player that just seems to continue to get better and better. He’s always been a fighter and a player that comes good in derby clashes! The Scottish defender looked very composed today and he had the beating of Dele Alli, who was hooked at half time. Tierney was as always one of Arsenal’s main players for winning the ball back. He’s a player who just needs to stay clear of injuries, the same that can be said for a lot of players currently plying their trade at the emirates.

Speaking of which – Thomas Partey is another one that can drive The Gunners forward as long as he can stay fit. He made three successful passes against Spurs and even ventured forward too.

The centre of defence partnership between Gabriel and Ben White looks to be a good one. The Brazilian made two tackles and the most clearances (Stats Via Whoscored). Between them the two centre-backs had over 100 touches of the ball and they managed to keep Harry Kane pretty quiet.

In terms of keeping the ball, Martin Odegaard was bossing possession for his team. Getting the Norwegian back on a permanent deal (Source The Guardian) looks to be a great move for Arteta and the Gunners hierarchy.

Young English forwards Buyako Saka and Emile Smith Rowe were scintillating to watch as they just ran tirelessly at the Spurs defence. Both scored and got an assists each too. Saka created three key passes. They both worked back well and helped out the rest of the team.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang had his best game of the season so far in this derby. He lead the line, defended from the front and his play showed up Kane. He was very energetic and deserved to get his goal today.

That Arsenal performance has to give the team and their support encouragement that they can push on this term. It is a valuable confidence booster but only if they consistently play like that. There’s no point getting a win here and then drop points in the next fixture Brighton.

They have plenty of talented players, they have scorers within the pool and can be direct and pacy. But today they showed desire and played in a good shape, plus with confidence.

This could be the platform that sees Mikel Arteta get this team back up the Premier League table. The Spanish coach certainly believes something special is brewing at the Emirates:

“I can feel what is happening here, and I can feel what is happening with the supporters, with the generation of players that we have here, with everybody that is involved in the organisation. I think it is going to be pretty powerful.”

Via Sky Sports

Barcelona Stuck With Ronald Koeman Despite Poor Start To Season

When Ronald Koeman accepted the FC Barcelona job in 2020, he was getting his dream job.

Unfortunately for the Dutch legend the timing has been pretty chaotic to say the least.

He’s been the one tasked with guiding the La Liga giants without the mercurial talent of Lionel Messi leading the line (Source – The Guardian).

Koeman was given the job by Josep Maria Bartomeu, a Barca President who wasn’t liked by the fans and who the players didn’t trust. That put Koeman on the back foot instantly.

During his first season in charge Koeman watched on as his side finished in third place in the league, seven points behind eventual winners Atletico Madrid. They were then soundly beaten by Messi’s future employers PSG in the round of 16 of the Champions League.

During previous tenures at the Nou Camp, managers wouldn’t have survived such a poor season. Yet there was little to no talk of Ronald Koeman departing Barca.

Now the simple reason is that the club can’t afford to get rid of their manager.

Barcelona are in such financial strife they simply can’t afford to dump Koeman. Even though his deal runs out next summer even then it could cost Barca and they might actually be better off to offer him a new deal (Source – Football Espana).

It’s extremely ironic that they couldn’t afford to keep Lionel Messi but cannot afford to sack Ronald Koeman.

Now to be fair to the manager, the fact that Barca have started so poorly isn’t really all down to him.

The whole club have been on a downer since Messi’s departure. The players that they’ve brought in aren’t quite in the same class as those that would bring titles to the club.

But you simply can’t get away from the fact that Barca are underperforming at the moment. They’re sitting in seventh place in La Liga, only winning twice in their first five outings. They’ve only scored eight goals and seven other teams have produced more strikes.

Koeman has already come out in the press asking the fans and media to show a bit of patience as he tries to get things right in Catalunya:

“The club is with me in this period of reconstruction. We have to reconstruct the team as a squad without making big investments and this takes time”

Via Sky Sports

Then there’s the looming spectre of Xavi. The former Barca midfielder has been linked with the club’s managerial hot-seat numerous times in recent years and that’s a boss that the fans want in charge of the club. Just yesterday Marca once again speculated that a deal could be done to get Xavi back to the Camp Nou.

That can be an issue with dreams, sometimes they turn into nightmares. Ronald Koeman might have been better placed saying with the Netherlands and waiting that bit longer for the Barca job. He’ll get very little thanks if he actually does a good job of just keeping things steady as Barcelona try and get through this financial mess.

Despite Having A Team Of Superstars – PSG Still Have To Be Admired

If PSG are level or losing at the 80th-minute mark in any Ligue 1 game, prepare yourself for a crash course in the not-so-subtle dark arts from the opposition team. Indeed, the next ten minutes and whatever is added on as injury time will probably see PSG’s rivals make no attempt to play football but rather disrupt the rhythm of the game in any way possible. 

It truly is a sight to behold and if you’re witnessing these unsporting antics from across the Channel in the UK for the first time, chances are you’ll quickly change your mind about what PSG are up against in Ligue 1. Yes, they have an embarrassment of riches and a squad (Via ESPN) that one thought only really possible to build on the video game FIFA, but nothing is handed to them in the French top-flight.  

Far from it when you consider that they still have to earn the right to be crowned league champions against the most cynical of opposition. 

Perhaps the best recent example of this came in late September when Mauricio Pochettino’s men had to travel to northeast France to play against bottom of the table Metz (ESPN Match Report).

It was a fixture that most had PSG down to win given that it was first against last in the league table, and with PSG the overwhelming favourites for the title in the latest Ligue 1 football betting markets, the chances of an upset were slim to none. As mentioned, on paper, it was a straightforward assignment which is why no one was surprised when right-back Achraf Hakimi put PSG ahead after just five minutes. 

But as so often happens with PSG when they score early, they go into a lethargic lull and tread water until the inevitable happens, they only had to wait until the thirty-ninth minute for that to take place in this instance.

Indeed, Boubakar Kouyaté was the man to rise highest and head home from a corner to draw Metz level.

The score would stay like that until the eightieth minute when Metz began kicking lumps out of the PSG players as they threatened to get closer to goal. The time-wasting would have driven the most patient amongst us to pull their hair out. Astonishingly, it was so cynical that the referee sent the Metz captain off and then sent the Metz manager off.

Now, you may be getting a better sense of what PSG are up against on a weekly basis. 

Still, a bruised and battered PSG did their best to try and win and in injury time, a turning Neymar with a fraction of space got away from his man, he played in Achraf Hakimi who slotted home to give the resilient Parisians the win. It was a victory for football as much as anything else. 

Now, you may be tempted to scoff at that given that PSG have a reputation for not being the poster boys of fair play themselves, especially in a financial sense.

That is certainly a discussion to be had on another day, however, should those same cynical tactics ever make their way across the Channel to the Premier League, there would be an outcry from supporters.

Indeed, PSG have to win games when the ball is in play for no longer than 120 seconds from the 80th minute onwards. In reality, a lot of the time they get fifteen minutes fewer than other teams do to win games. 

One probably has to watch a PSG game to come to this conclusion but with this in mind, you have to admire the way PSG still find a way to win despite coming up against these distasteful tactics time and time again.

Romelu Lukaku Already Proving To Be Difference Maker At Chelsea

Credit – PremierLeague.com

When Chelsea splashed out £97.5m to bring back Romelu Lukaku (Source Sky Sports), it was done with a purpose.

That purpose was to score goals and make a difference.

After just three games back in the Premier League, the Belgian hitman has already proven himself as being that difference maker.

Chelsea are unbeaten in those three outings, beating Arsenal and Aston Villa and getting an away draw at Liverpool. They’ve scored six goals in those fixtures, with Lukaku banging in half of those strikes.

He struck in his second debut against the Gunners and then grabbed a brace in his return to Stamford Bridge.

The twenty-eight year old was always a fine finisher in England’s top flight but his two seasons in Serie A with Inter Milan have focused Romelu and now he is truly a world class striker.

Defences just don’t know how to deal with him. If they get touch tight, he can bully them and turn them. If they stand off him then he will just go on and run at them.

If you give him a split second in and around the penalty area then he will kill you. That lethal instinct is the greatest difference between the Lukaku at Manchester United and that one that is currently leading the line at the Bridge. Playing in Italy he has learned that chances don’t come along very often, so when they do then you have to put them away.

Against Villa tonight (BBC Match Report), Lukaku only had two attempts at goal and he put them both into the back of the net.

His first strike saw him make a magnificent run which was well matched by a sublime pass from Mateo Kovacic. The smart run actually made the Croatian’s mind up for that pass by the way. Once he had the ball Romelu then attacked Villa’s goal with pace and then he used his knowledge of Axel Tuanzebe to step back inside and then hit his shot past the Villa keeper.

For his second, he receives the ball just outside of the Aston Villa penalty area. He takes a touch to set himself before viciously smashing it home with his left foot!

Overall Lukaku was extremely efficient today. He made ten passes and they were all accurate passes to teammates. No Chelsea player could beat his tally of winning three aerial battles. The forward didn’t see a lot of the ball but when he did, he made sure it all counted!

That is why he was brought back to London.

Times last season, Chelsea struggled in such encounters. The likes of Timo Werner and his teammates would struggle to find the net and that meant points were dropped. I just don’t see that happening as much this term with this reenergised and determined Lukaku leading the line.

He now has a winning mentality and is desperate to show Chelsea fans just what he can do. Something club legend Petr Cech recently picked up on:

‘He knows what he’s coming in to and probably has a little bit of unfinished business here which he can nicely complete if everything goes the way we all wish.’

Via Chelseafc.com

The Blues support are already thankful to see Romelu Lukaku back within their ranks and will be looking forward to more glory days this year!

World Cup Every Two Years Would Kill The Competition

Fifa’s chief of football Arsene Wenger has a proposal to make the World Cup an event that is held every two years instead of it’s four year cycle.

Wenger’s idea has been met with plenty of criticism from associations all over the world (Source: BBC Sport).

But the legendary French manager has stated:

“The World Cup every four years was decided in the 1930s and it should not just carry on because of tradition. The Champions League is played every year and retains its prestige. This would be the same.”

Via The Mirror

I don’t think the Champions League has the same prestige it did when it was first founded and certainly doesn’t have the same as the European Cup had.

When it just had champions in the competition, in my opinion, it was better. The Champions League is now weighted towards the bigger leagues/sides and there are far too many games.

The best thing about a World Cup, for me, is the anticipation and the tradition you get with it.

Even though I’m Scottish and having more teams would help us out, I think having thirty-two nations is the right number and it shouldn’t be enlarged further.

The advent of the internet and the growth of club football as a super global enterprise has already diluted the impact of the World Cup.

I look back with a lot of fondness to the World Cups of the nineties. A big factor in that was the surprise talent and teams you’d see in those tournaments.

You don’t get that now because the internet gives you instant access and European clubs snap up the world’s best talent at young ages, so we now see the best young South Americans and Africans in Europe very early now.

I do agree with Wenger that the international calendar could be altered and less travelling time for players would be a good thing but not with a biannual World Cup.

I’ve liked the introduction of the Nations League by Uefa. For me, I’d just dump friendlies.

My international calendar would be World Cup qualifiers, Nations League, Euro qualifiers or confederation equivalent plus the two major tournaments. Instead of friendlies I’d go with B teams playing the day before one or two qualifiers a year as a way to get less experienced players used to the international stage.

I also don’t buy Wenger’s ‘it will generate more money for grassroots football’. Fifa always has a very hefty bank balance and they’ve never spent enough on youth football and I don’t believe that will change.

Here’s hoping that the clubs, associations and confederations have the strength to kick this proposal back into the long grass!

Man United’s Summer Signings Should See Them Challenging For Silverware

Manchester United brought in three major transfers this summer and those deals should see Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men challenging for the Premier League title this season!

All three new signings will definitely add a significant amount to the Man United squad.

The fairytale story is obviously the return of Cristiano Ronaldo to Old Trafford.

The Portuguese international rose to stardom at United before reaching superstardom at Real Madrid. He’s now, alongside Lionel Messi, the greatest footballer on the planet.

As a player Ronaldo returns as a different footballing animal. He’s no longer a pacey, creative and devastating winger. He has evolved into an extremely prolific number nine.

Looking at the figures from last term, United could be doing with a free scoring forward. Attacking midfielder Bruno Fernandes ended up as The Red Devils top scorer in the league with eighteen goals. The top scoring forward was Marcus Rashford with only eleven strikes. In total, United scored ten less than last term’s Premier League champions Manchester City.

During Cristiano’s last twelve months at Juventus, he struck twenty-nine times in thirty-one Serie A appearances. He may be thirty-six years of age but Ronaldo has shown no slowing down in terms of finding the net.

Even this week he once again proved he just can’t be stopped from getting those vital goals:

I honestly can’t think of a forward that is as intelligent, focused and as fit as Ronaldo. That’s why his career hasn’t dipped away like so any others even in his mid-thirties. He knows to stick to certain positions and he knows when to get away from his markers.

The veteran is very keen to hit the ground running and rekindle his special relationship with Man United’s fans:

“I know they still sing my music which has made me feel even more happy and my commitment is to give everything on the pitch, like I did before, like I do it all the time, and try to do my best, help the team score goals, make assists, win games, and I hope to see them very, very soon.”

Source – ManUtd.com

Obviously a goalscorer can only be as good as those around him that are creating his chances.

That’s where fellow summer signing Jadon Sancho comes in.

The England international should come in and add a new threat on United’s righthand side, a problem position Man Utd have had in recent seasons.

In the last two terms for Borussia Dortmund, Jadon has recorded twenty-seven assists in 58 Bundesliga fixtures.

Sancho loves attacking defences. Last season; he completed around 3 dribbles per game and made 2.6 key passes too. He has the pace, the nifty foot work and skills to beat opposition defenders (Stats from Whoscored). As his goals and assist stats show, he’s very effective in the final third.

Once Jadon Sancho settles into the Man United way; then the likes of Ronaldo, Mason Greenwood and Edinson Cavani will relish playing alongside a man with the supply qualities that the twenty-one year old possesses.

Now another big issue United have had has been in the centre of their defence.

Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof have always been an adequate partnership but that’s not good enough to secure titles and trophies.

By bringing in Raphael Varane, The Red Devils have brought in on the world’s best centre-backs.

His pace, his high concentration levels and his consistency should make those in the backline better by just playing alongside him.

The World Cup winner should in particular form a fine partnership beside Maguire in the heart of defence. United have missed having a top class central defensive pairing since the days of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic.

Again United were behind City in goals conceded last year, Varian’s signing could change that particular stat.

Another key element that both Ronaldo and Varane will bring to this Manchester United team is a massive winning mentality. These two players are born winners and they have the medals to prove it. That should see Solskjaer seeing his other players raise their standards to meet those that have just arrived.

Now while these are three super signings, Man United still have issues that need to be looked at.

In goal, David De Gea has looked good again but he has been shaky for a few seasons now and he has Dean Henderson breathing down his neck. It will be interesting to see who will be the number one keeper throughout this term.

In midfield, United also need to find out who will be able to help protect the defence. Questions surround Nemanja Matic’s legs and whether he can last a full campaign. Fred for me isn’t the answer. The Brazilian is decent but he doesn’t do enough to be as impactful as what you’d like from an elite team.

For me, I’d say Scott McTominay is the best option as he is mobile and hard working. Although I’d like to see if Lindelof could be deployed in that role. The Swede is good on the ball and he has a nose for cutting out danger.

But no matter what, Manchester United and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer now have a much stronger squad and one that really should be challenging for major honours come next summer.

Takehiro Tomiyasu Could Become A Star At Arsenal!

According to Sky Sports News, Arsenal are on the verge of signing Takehiro Tomiyasu from Bologna is a deal worth £19.8m.

With the same report suggesting Hector Bellerin is heading back to Spain to join Real Betis, it seems extremely likely that the Japanese international will arrive at the Emirates to challenge for the right-back spot.

That being said Takehiro is a versatile defender and he can also play as a centre-back and as a left sided fullback if needed. Last term he played in all three positions for I Rossoblu.

I think Tomiyasu has all the attributes needed to succeed in the Premier League.

At twenty-two years of age, he represents a good age to develop under Gunners coach Mikel Arteta. Even though he is still a youngster, the Japanese star is already pretty experienced for his age. He’s already played in over sixty Serie A games and represented his national team twenty-three times.

Tomiyasu isn’t a defender who’ll just rush in for the sake of it. He will judge a situation intelligently before stepping in and taking charge of a situation. He has often proved that he possesses high concentration levels and in-game intelligence.

Last season; Takehiro made 1.5 tackles per game, 1.7 interceptions and a whopping 3.3 clearances. He’s a player that sticks to his task, who will cover for a teammates mistake and try and get himself in between shots and his goal (Stats from Whoscored).

That sort of commitment will endear the defender to the Arsenal crowd, much like fellow fullback Kieran Tierney has.

The defensive star only picked up three yellow cards last year, again showing he’s smart when timing his challenges. He’s also terrific in the air, last season on average he was winning around 3 headers per league game in Italy. Against Manchester City, Arsenal were vulnerable in the air and having a taller right-back will give them a better chance to deal with crosses into their own penalty area.

The Japanese international has previously stated that he has learned a lot on how to defend under Bologna boss Siniša Mihajlović:

“He has given me a lot of advice on how to move my arms, but above all, Mihailovic insists on defending the area,” 

Via Eminetra.co.nz

Takehiro is also very accomplished with the ball at his feet. Again he’s a defender that doesn’t seem to get easily flustered, in or out of possession, which is a plus given some of the poor defending we’ve seen from the Gunners this term. His passing success rate of above 80% will be another plus point for Arteta.

He can read the game well with his interceptions and then take it out of a dangerous position with his unique dribbling technique. He’s pretty nifty and an awkward player of his size and that can see him beat opponents too. He’s got quite the engine on him and he will always show a willingness to push forward and get back.

Tomiyasu is a player that has shown in Italy that he can perform consistently throughout a campaign. Again something the Gunners defence has lacked in recent seasons.

I think that Takehiro Tomiyasu will fit the Premier League style and should flourish at Arsenal given half a chance. He’d be a player that I’d expect to see improve rapidly in London if they can secure his signature. But he won’t fix all their problems, the Gunners defence will still have to improve as a unit or they will still crumble in pressured situations.

Tottenham Will Be Getting A Great Signing If They Can Take Barca’s Emerson Royal

The Daily Mail are reporting that Tottenham Hotspur have agreed a £25.7m deal to bring Emerson Royal from FC Barcelona.

Emerson has been a standout performer for Real Betis in La Liga in recent seasons. Barca then exercised an option to bring the player to the Nou Camp earlier in the summer.

If it weren’t for financial troubles that currently surround the Catalan giants, then I believe Emerson wouldn’t be heading anywhere and he’d remain at Barcelona for the long-term.

But as the release of Lionel Messi has shown us, Barca are in major trouble and need to bring in funds. I’m sure there are others in the squad they’d prefer to offload first but those players aren’t creating sufficient interest in this transfer window.

Back on the Sixteenth of this month, Barca President Joan Laporta laid bare the club’s dire financial position:

“To the initial €617m debt you have to add €389m on players, €90m in litigation, €79m in advance television rights and €56m from the [new stadium] project. In total, €1.35bn.” 

Via The Guardian

Spurs have clearly waited to pounce and now look set to bring in the exciting right-back!

The defender has already picked up four caps for the Brazilian national team.

He’s a direct runner, who doesn’t miss a chance to attack the opposition down the right flank. Emerson also possesses the tricks to get beyond opponents and he can also deliver a wicked ball from wide positions too. 

The twenty-two year old has all the attributes that makes us hark back to Dani Alves.

Defensively Emerson stands up well to those running at him, he makes smart interceptions and tracks back vigorously. 

In La Liga last term – the right-sided defender contributed with a goal and four assists. More importantly he averaged 2.7 tackles per game, made almost 2 clearances, had a passing success percentage that’s above 80% and makes around 2.5 clearances per league out too (Stats – Whoscored). 

He has also featured in each of Barca’s three league games this term and again has an impressive passing success rate of 86.5%.

I am betting Spurs boss Nuno Espirito Santo would relish bringing Emerson to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Tottenham might be the only club that still possess a 100% winning start to the current campaign but that right side of their defence could still be improved upon.

I don’t think the new Lilywhites gaffer fancies Serge Aurier, who has proved himself a bit of a liability a various points of his career. Japhet Tanganga has come in and looked decent but I am not sure he or Matt Doherty are the type of player to help get Spurs back into the top four reckoning.

In Emerson Royal, Tottenham Hotspur would probably be getting a player that can make that position his own and ha step potential to become the best right-back in the Premier League.

If they want to keep the momentum going, then adding one or two new quality faces to the squad will bolster Spurs’ chances. Emerson would represent that in my opinion!

Liverpool’s Harvey Elliott Could To Hit Stardom This Season

Neither Liverpool nor Chelsea could find a winner in this evening’s exciting Premier League encounter (BBC Match Report).

Reds boss Jurgen Klopp went with experience in the main as his side faced up to the well fancied Chelsea. Andy Robertson, Fabinho and Roberto Firmino all found their way back into the German’s starting line-up.

Yet Klopp also decided to allow youngster Harvey Elliott to retain his place within the first eleven.

It was a big call to keep the teenager in the side but Elliott didn’t let his gaffer down.

The recently called up England under-21 man (Source – The Guardian) certainly wasn’t overawed by the occasion as he continually searched out the ball and he hardly put a foot wrong during the fierce battle.

Playing against the likes of N’Golo Kante, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic can really intimidate some players but Harvey seemed to relish the chance to shine against such opposition.

The eighteen year old has played in each of Liverpool’s three Premier League games thus far, starting the last two. He’s currently keeping the likes of Thiago, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keita out of the team and deservedly so too!

No player from either side made more passes than Harvey did against Chelsea (86). Of those passes, the young midfielder also made the most accurate passes (75) and boasted a passing success rate of 87%. The midfielder also has over 100 touches of the ball and only Trent Alexander-Arnold would beat that stat (Stats from Whoscored).

Harvey plays with that awkwardness and roughness that only seems to come from a young prodigious talent. He is direct, runs all day and doesn’t let a mistake or two bother him.

His emergence this term, after a very fruitful loan spell at Blackburn Rovers last season, could really soften the blow of losing Dutch midfield star Georginio Wijnaldum to PSG this summer.

Klopp has already suggested that Harvey will see more first team football this year due to Gini’s recent departure:

“Last weekend it is not that Harvey was the saviour of our midfield problem because obviously we don’t have one. But if Gini was still here then Harvey might not have played against Burnley. I knew before that there was a good chance he would play well and he did.”

Klopp Via iNews

If his start to this campaign is anything to go by, then Harvey Elliott could really be set for superstardom at Anfield. I believe he’ll only get better and better under a great coach like Jurgen Klopp.

His maturity on the ball and eagerness to impress may help The Reds to out gun most midfields and see him even catch Gareth Southgate’s eye!